Daniel Bowman Simon of The Who Farm sent me a link to this scanned book: War Vegetable Gardening and the Home Storage of Vegetables by The National War Garden Commission from 1918. I skimmed it and it looks like it has a lot of useful information for today's frontyard gardener.
Compost is also used as a top dressing during the growing season for hastening growth. In the cities and towns tons of leaves are burned every fall. This is a loss which ought to be prevented. These leaves properly composted with other vegetable waste and earth would be worth hundreds of dollars to the gardens next spring. In planning a permanent garden, a space should be reserved near the hot bed or seed bed, and in this space should be piled, as soon as pulled, all plants which are free from diseases and insects. This applies to all vegetables and especially to peas and beans, as these belong to a group of plants which take nitrogen from the air, during growth, and store it in their roots. When these plants are decayed they will return to to the soil not only much of the plant food taken from it during their growth but additional nitrogen as well. Nitrogen in the soil is necessary for satisfactory leaf growth. The material so composted should be allowed to decay throughout the winter, and when needed should be used according to. the instructions given for using compost. The sweepings of pigeon lofts or chicken coops make valuable fertilizer. Prepared sheep manure, where procurable at a reasonable price, is possibly the safest concentrated fertilizer. It should be used in small quantities rather than spread broadcast. Scatter it along the row before seed is sown or apply by mixing it with water in a pail, stirring the mixture to the consistency of thin mush, and pouring it around the roots of the plants.War Vegetable Gardening and the Home Storage of Vegetables
Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the editor-in-chief of MAKE and Cool Tools. Twitter: @frauenfelder. Come and hear Mark speak at the ALA conference in Chicago on July 1.